Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene

Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating from this program will:

  • Assume responsibility for professional actions and care based on accepted scientific theories, research, standards of care and regulatory guidelines.
  • Assess persons of all ages/stages of life and cultures in order to formulate treatment plans and evaluate patient needs in a diverse society.
  • Provide humanistic, preventative and therapeutic dental hygiene services to sustain patient-centered care and outcomes.
  • Utilize information technology and scientific literature to assure evidence-based decision making.
  • Demonstrate self-awareness through continual self-assessment for lifelong learning and professional growth.
  • Utilize information technology and scientific literature to assure evidence-based decision making.
  • Apply individual and population risk factors, social determinants of health and scientific research to promote improved health and enhanced quality of life.
  • Develop health education strategies for the prevention of disease and promotion of health for patients across socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds.
  • Communicate and provide health education and oral self-care to diverse populations.
  • Model civic and social engagement through active involvement in professional and community affiliations to advance oral health.
  • Promote and lead ethical and equitable patient care in all practice environments utilizing appropriate communication skills.
  • Inspire and network with others to develop effective strategies to foster interprofessional care.


1.  Dental Hygiene graduates will possess the skills and knowledge to assess, plan, implement and evaluate the dental hygiene process of care in a culturally diverse society and regulatory guidelines.

2.  Dental Hygiene graduates will adopt and attitude of lifelong learning and scientific inquiry that contributes to the provision of evidence-based practice.

3.  Dental Hygiene graduates will exemplify a commitment to community and encourage participation in professional endeavors for the advancement of oral health. 

4.  Dental Hygiene graduates will demonstrate leadership in upholding ethical, professional, inclusive, and progressive practice.

Program Requirements

The dental hygiene program begins in August of each year and continues for two academic years with a summer session between years. For more information, contact the program director.

UMKC Essentials

First Semester Experience Course (GEFSE)3
Written Communication:
ENGLISH 110Introduction to Academic Prose3
ENGLISH 225English II: Intermediate Academic Prose3
Oral Communication (Satisfied in program requirements below)
Math Pathway (Satisfied in program requirements below)
Critical Thinking in the Arts & Humanities (GECRT-AH)3
Critical Thinking in Natural & Physical Sciences (GECRT-SC)3
Critical Thinking in Social & Behavioral Sciences (GECRT-SS)3
Culture & Diversity Course (GECDV)3
Civic & Urban Engagement Course (GECUE; Satisfied in program requirements below)
Total Credits21

Constitution Course Requirement

Section 170.011.1 of the Missouri Revised Statutes, 2015, states that all candidates for a degree issued by a college or university in the state of Missouri must have “satisfactorily passed an examination on the provisions and principles of the Constitution of the United States and of the state of Missouri, and in American history and American institutions.” 

Courses at UMKC that satisfy this state requirement are:

Choose one of the following:3
The Supreme Court And The Criminal Process
U.S. History to 1877
U.S. History Since 1877
Honors American Government
American Government
Total Credits3

There are a few other ways this requirement can be satisfied for students transferring to UMKC:

  • Take an equivalent course from the list above at a regionally accredited institution.
  • Earn credit for one of the above courses through AP, IB, or CLEP.
  • Take a course that directly satisfies the Missouri Constitution Requirement at another Missouri institution.
  • Have a previous bachelors degree (or higher) from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Have an Associate of Arts degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Complete the 42 Hour Core at a Missouri institution and have it listed on the official transcript.

Program Prerequisites

A minimum grade of 'C' must be earned in all prerequisite science coursework.

Please choose one of the following:3
Biology and Living
General Biology I
General Biology II
Please choose one of the following course sequences:6-8
Introductory Anatomy
and Human Physiology
Anatomy & Physiology I
and Anatomy and Physiology II
BIOLOGY 112Microbiology and Living3
CHEM 211
General Chemistry I
and Experimental General Chemistry I
COMM-ST 110Fundamentals of Effective Speaking and Listening (satisfies GE Oral Communication requirement)3
or COMM-ST 140 Introduction to Communication
MATH 110Precalculus Algebra (or any 200-level or above MATH/STAT course; satisfies GE Math Pathway)3
or MATH 120 Precalculus
PSYCH 210General Psychology3
SOCIOL 101Sociology: An Introduction3
Total Credits29-31

 Professional Degree Requirements

BMS 93065Anatomy of the Head & Neck2
DENT-HYG 3000Dental Morphology And Occlusion2
DENT-HYG 3020Dental Radiology2
DENT-HYG 3030Introduction to Histopathology of Oral Tissues1
DENT-HYG 3080Introduction to the Preventive Practice of Dental Hygiene (satisfies GEFSE course, if not previously completed)4
DENT-HYG 3080LPreclinical Dental Hygiene2
DENT-HYG 3200General and Oral Pathology2
DENT-HYG 3210Applied Nutrition and Biochemistry2
DENT-HYG 3220Dental Biomaterials2
DENT-HYG 3260Principles Of Periodontics2
DENT-HYG 3280CDental Hygiene Clinic I3
DENT-HYG 3285Seminar In Dental Hygiene I2
DENT-HYG 3300Radiographic Interpretation1
DENT-HYG 3320Oral Health Behavior Change3
DENT-HYG 3340Principles Of Public Health2
DENT-HYG 4001Clinical Oral Radiology1
DENT-HYG 4020Local Anesthesia And Pain Control3
DENT-HYG 4050Periodontics II1
DENT-HYG 4060CDental Hygiene Clinic II2
DENT-HYG 4065Seminar in Dental Hygiene II1
DENT-HYG 4080Introduction to Research and Evidence Based Decision Making2
DENT-HYG 4100Pharmacology3
DENT-HYG 4120CDental Hygiene Clinic III4
DENT-HYG 4210Practice Management3
DENT-HYG 4220Interdisciplinary Community Oral Health Field Experiences (satisfies GECUE course)3
DENT-HYG 4240Ethics In Professional Practice1
DENT-HYG 4260Senior Seminar2
DENT-HYG 4260CDental Hygiene Clinic IV4
LS-PHYS 3070Oral Physiology3
Dental Hygiene Elective (choose one of the following)2
ECP III Training Course (limited availability)
Community Dentistry Practicum (limited availability)
Advanced Clinical Practice (limited availability)
Independent Study in Dental Hygiene
Practicum in Clinical Instruction (limited availability)
Total Credits67

GPA Minimum: 2.5

Total credit hours: 120

Admission Requirements

This clinical entry level program is for the individual who wants to go into the field of dental hygiene. The primary goals of the basic preparation bachelor of science degree program in dental hygiene are to prepare dental hygienists to perform competently in clinical practice and to perform competently in clinical practice and/ or community oral health program planning, clinical teaching,  special patient care, practice management and research.

Admission to the Clinical Entry Level Program

Admission is on a selective basis and requires more than simply meeting certain course or GPA requirements. Factors considered in the selection process are the candidates' academic credentials, letters of evaluation, a personal interview, motivation and all other information submitted by the candidates. Formal applications for admission to the dental hygiene program must be submitted no later than December 1st. Classes formally begin each year at the end of August. Minimum requirements and credentials for application are all of the following:

  1. Graduation from an accredited high school or its equivalent.
  2. Satisfactory completion of approximately two academic years or 60 semester hours of college. (The 60 semester hours must satisfy the general education requirements, which are specified later in this section. All general education requirements must be completed prior to entrance into the dental hygiene program.)
  3. Application to UMKC.
  4. Supplemental application for admission to the Division of Dental Hygiene.
  5. College transcripts of all college coursework.
  6. A cumulative college GPA of at least 2.75.
  7. A college science prerequisite GPA of 2.75. Preferred GPA for admission is 3.3. 
  8. Three reference forms. 
  9. Personal interview. 
  10. For international applicants, a satisfactory TOEFL score (at least 550 on the paper test or 213 on the computer-based version).

Notification of Admission

Applications for admission are reviewed by the School of Dentistry Dental Hygiene Student Admissions Committee. After a decision is reached on an application, notification of acceptance is made by mail. The applicant has 30 days from the date of the acceptance letter to make a required non-refundable $100 deposit. This deposit is applied to enrollment fees.

Several applicants are placed on an alternates list. In the event that a position becomes available, an applicant from this list is chosen to fill the vacancy. Alternates may be accepted through the first week of the program.

Tools for Planning and Fulfilling Academic Requirements

UMKC's Major Maps are detailed, semester by semester plans that lead a student to complete all degree requirements within four years.  Plans include benchmarks and critical courses by term that assist a student’s evaluation of progress and major “fit”.  In order to ensure that the appropriate courses are taken, students are encouraged to consult with the undergraduate advisor for this major. Please see the tab above to view the major map for this program.

UMKC’s Transfer Guides provide detailed guidance on recommended transfer coursework, plans of study, transfer timelines, and transfer contact information. To ensure a seamless transfer experience, students are encouraged to work with both their community college advisor and a UMKC advisor when planning their coursework.

UMKC’s PlanMyDegree ‘Audit’ degree audit system provides an individual evaluation of all degree requirements (General Education, Degree Specific, Major Specific, etc.) for students' officially recorded (Office of the Registrar) and “what if” exploratory plans of study.  This evaluation is used to certify all graduation requirements.

UMKC’s PlanMyDegree ‘Plans’ degree planning tool enables students to develop a personalized semester by semester plan of study towards completion of degree requirements for student’s officially recorded (Office of the Registrar) and “what if” exploratory plans of study. Update and edit your full plan to degree completion each term and confirm accuracy each semester with your Academic Advisor(s).